Karen: Meaning, Popularity, Origin of Baby Name Karen

Karen

Pronunciation: KA-rin (key)

Origin of the name Karen:

Danish form of Katherine, a cognate of the Greek Aikaterinē, the root of which is katharos (pure, unsullied). Var: Caren, Carin, Karen, Karena, Karrin, Karyn.

From A World of Baby Names by Teresa Norman.

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US Popularity of Karen Over Time

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Comments and insights on the name Karen: | Edit

Growing up (I am now in my late 30s) there was only one other Karen in my classes and the name is less popular now. I like my name and enjoy that it is not too different or too common. There are several spellings but this seems to be the most popular spelling

There is an ethnic group in Thailand and Burma named the "Karen". The "Karen" language is also commonly spoken among small villages in Thailand.

My name is Karen, I'm 23 years old (born 1989) and I've always hated my name.. I was the only Karen growing up aside from many other kids who's mothers name were Karen. I was paid out for having 'an old persons name' . Obviously now I wouldn't take it to heart but when you're a kid you know how it can be.
Since around the age of 13 I've gone by 'Kaz' whenever possible and am mostly known as Kaz these days.

Personal experiences with the name Karen: | Edit

My sister Karen was born in 1984. She does not like her name at all. Besides her, the only other Karens are all over 40. It's unfortunately one of those names that dates you a bit, and it can be a challenge when you don't fit into the generation people think it belongs to.

I'm a teacher, and one of my sweetest Kindergarteners is named "Karen." It's not a common name anymore, but I hope it's on the upswing.

Nicknames for Karen: | Edit

Kare-co, Care Bear, Ren, Kare, Kare Bear, Kari, Special K, Kazza, Kaz

Meanings and history of the name Karen: | Edit

Karen is the Danish form of the name Katherine.

It is also the name of an ethnic group in Burma.

The meaning of the name Karen is purity

Karen is also used as kids theme parlours in India

Famous real-life people named Karen: | Edit

Karen Carpenter, one half of the singing duo The Carpenters
Karen Allen (actress) most known for playing Marion Ravenwood in two Indian Jones films "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull"
Karen Blixen was the birth name of author Isak Dinesen ("Out of Africa")
Karen Killilea, whose story helped publicize and improve care for children with cerebral palsy.
Karen Black, actress
Karen Kwan, figure skater
Karen Akers, singer and actress
Karyn Parsons, actress (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)
Karen Sheila Gillan, Scottish actress in Doctor Who (nicknamed Kaz)

Karen in song, story & screen: | Edit

Karen Vick(Chief Vick)- The chief of police on the show Psych.
Karen Koltrane -- Sonic Youth
Karen Revisited -- Sonic Youth
Karen By Night -- Jill Sobule
Karen -- Matthew Sweet
Karen Brewer from the Baby-Sitters Little Sister books
Karen Brockman -- the youngest child in the British sitcom, outnumbered, played by Ramona Marquez
Karen - The National
I Have a Secret - Half Japanese
Dr. Karen Kim- character from US TV show "Mistresses"
Karen Roe - from the TV drama series "One Tree Hill"

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